1. $20b GCC aid package for Oman and Bahrain
    RIYADH — Gulf Arab countries launched on Thursday a $20 billion aid package for Bahrain and Oman.
  2. “comprehensive constitutional reforms” announced in Morocco
    Morocco’s King Mohammed VI has announced that he will launch “comprehensive constitutional reforms,” following the recent revolutions in the African countries.
  3. Activists seek elections in United Arab Emirates
    A group of citizens in the United Arab Emirates petitioned the rulers yesterday to allow a popularly elected Parliament, signaling that demands for leadership overhauls raging across the Middle East have also reached the oil-rich Gulf federation.
  4. Fire shuts down Iraq-Turkey pipeline
    An oil pipeline carrying crude oil from northern Iraq to Turkey has been closed down due to a fire, causing disruption in the oil flow from the major supplier, Iraq.
  5. Saudi ferment, and a king’s choice
    Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah will not have to break his piggy-bank to make good on his promise to hand out $36 billion to Saudi citizens. With foreign reserves of over $440 billion, and oil prices at over $100 a barrel, any such rainy day remains distant.
  6. Afghan suicide blast kills Kunduz police chief
    Witnesses said the bomber had approached Abdul Rahman Sayedkhili in the street in Kunduz City and detonated the device.
  7. Yemen: President Saleh announces ‘parliamentary system’
    In a live televised address, he said a referendum would be held this year on measures including a new election law.
  8. Saudi Arabia police open fire at protest in Qatif
    Witnesses said police also beat demonstrators with batons injuring at least three people.
  9. Nato ‘kills cousin of Afghan President Hamid Karzai’
    Yar Muhammad Khan was at his home in Dand district near Kandahar city when he was shot dead in an overnight raid.
  10. Libya: Gaddafi forces push rebels from Ras Lanuf
    There were reports of severe civilian casualties after rebel positions and residential areas came under fire from rockets and shells.